When people ask us “how long are my letters of administration good for,” we want to see a copy of the letters of administration. If there is no expiration date on it, then they are good for the rest of your life. Essentially, most letters of administration can last forever. Look at an example of letters of administration – there is no statement on it that it is only good for a certain time period.
With many courts in New York, one for each county, rules may vary from court to court. Circumstances can also vary from case to case. So you sometimes do have letters that are only good for a certain time period, but that’s an exception rather than the rule.
Most letters of administration are good for the rest of your life, but when a bank is conducting a transaction, their policy is usually to see a recent Certificate of Appointment of Administrator from the court confirming that your letters of administration are still in effect. They do this to make sure that nothing changed in your case, that your letters are not revoked and that you are still in good standing with the court regarding compliance, bonding, accounting, reports or any other issues. Banks call this a “fresh Certificate.” You can see an example of a Certificate:
To get a new certificate, you just have to go to the court that issued the letters of administration, see a clerk in the cashier’s department, pay six dollars and they will issue a new certificate. The new certificate will be good for the next six months.